Your ultimate guide to Michigan's best wineries, breweries and distilleries

The best beer, wine and spirits Michigan has to offer

DETROIT – Michigan's production of wine, beer and other spirits is on the rise - which is good news for the state, and even better news for Michiganders.

You don't have to travel far to get some of the best tasting, best quality wine, beer or even whiskey - it could be right in your backyard.

Below you'll find some of the best wineries, breweries and distilleries in the state.

Michigan Wineries:

Black Star Farms - Traverse City: Black Star Farms is a unique wine & culinary destination in the heart of Traverse City’s wine country that features two winery production facilities with tasting rooms on both the Old Mission and Leelanau Wine Trails. Just 12 miles north along scenic M-22 from Traverse City, the largest, and flagship property near Suttons Bay also includes a luxury Inn, event spaces, a farm-to-table cafe, a distillery and an equestrian facility.

Chateau Aeronautique Winery - Jackson: Snuggled in off the beaten path alongside a grass runway in an air park community, their Tasting Room offers a warm inviting atmosphere with friendly and knowledgeable staff. The Gazebo, their original Tasting Room, is an intimate setting that is perfect for holding Private Tastings on select weekends. A much larger second venue in the Irish Hills area is set to open in late fall of 2017 which also includes a site for our future vineyard. While there is no vineyard on site at the Jackson location, all of their wines are made from 100% Michigan Grapes.

Fenn Valley - Fennville: Fenn Valley offers a wide selection of wines for every palate. There are many ways to experience our wines ranging from free tastings to custom private labels. Fenn Valley Vineyards is located in beautiful West Michigan, near the city of Fennville. We are nestled between the popular vacation areas of South Haven, Saugatuck/Douglas and Holland. We are close to I-196 for easy on and off, just follow the signs.

Lemon Creek Winery - Berrien Spring/Grand HavenLemon Creek is a name with 160 years of grape and fruit growing experience. The Lemon Family first came to Berrien County in 1834 and established its present farm on Lemon Creek Road in 1855. Benjamin Lemon had a saw mill on a creek near Berrien Springs, MI, the creek thus became known as “Lemon’s Creek”. Time went by and the old dirt road that ran parallel to the creek was eventually named Lemon Creek Road.

Lone Oak Vineyard - Ann Arbor: Come visit Southeast Michigan's oldest and largest commercial vineyard. We grow 12 world-class European grape varieties on a 25 acre site featuring beautiful south-facing hillsides with ideal soil conditions. Our vineyard is on the same latitude as the border of Southern France and Northern Spain, producing superior wine grapes.

Shady Lane Cellars - Suttons Bay: Located at the base of Leelanau Peninsula, just minutes from downtown Traverse City, the historic estate offers more than wine. Over the years, Shady Lane Cellars has grown from eleven acres to 150 acres of carefully tended land. This includes over 52 acres of grapes including the original Riesling and Pinot Noir, and additional plantings of Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Blue Franc (also known as Blaufränkisch or Lemberger), Gewurztraminer and other delicious grape varieties.

Crooked Vine Vineyard & Winery - Alanson:  Vineyards, panoramic views of the Petoskey hills and surrounding lakes can be seen, as you relax with a glass of wine on our covered porch. Sample award winning wines in our rustic tasting room or enjoy a glass of wine strolling through their vineyard, orchard and woods.

Chateau Chantal - Traverse CityChateau Chantal is a 65-acre estate located on the Old Mission Peninsula in one of the most scenic areas of the Great Lakes. It is a unique destination that combines vineyards & winery, a bed & breakfast, winding roads, fresh air & kind company, all of which serve to create a retreat into the Old World.

Bowers Harbor Vineyards - Traverse City: Visit Bowers Harbor Vineyards and enjoy the epic views, award-winning wines, and friendly, informative staff. Specialize in award-winning and estate Pinot Grigio, Riesling, Chardonnay, Cabernet Franc, Gewurztraminer, Pinot Noir and meritage blends. 

Sandhill Crane Vineyards - Jackson: Family owned and operated, Sandhill Crane Vineyards uses only the finest local produce for our handcrafted wines, made right on the premises. Our winemaker is known for her wide range of clean, rich, complex wines. Made lovingly in small batches, the tasting list includes well-balanced acidic white wines, rich reds, flavorful fruit wines, and delicious sweet-tart dessert wines.

Ciccone Vineyard & Winery - Suttons BayCiccone Vineyard & Winery presents one of northern Michigan’s most unique and picturesque wineries. Their Old World tasting room is situated atop the rolling hills of Leelanau Peninsula and features award-winning estate wines.

Check out more Michigan wineries here.

Michigan Breweries

Right Brain Brewery - Traverse City: They started brewing and serving curious beers in Traverse CIty's 'Warehouse District' over a decade ago. When they ran out of space, they moved to their headquarters into a warehouse at 225 East 16th Street that dates back more than 50 years. At any time, they have between 15 and 25 craft beers on tap. In addition to beer, they also serve a selection of locally made wine, cider, and mead.

Shorts Brewing Company - Bellaire: The story begins in 2002 when a 22-year-old brewer named Joe Short registered Short’s Brewing Company as a business in the state of Michigan. Having already gained significant brewing experience at other Michigan breweries, Joe realized that his style of brewing was best suited to his own business model where he would not have to answer to anyone for putting lots (and lots) of the best possible ingredients into his brews, or for brewing specialty beers that some might consider outrageous. Joe wanted to brew bold, flavorful and extremely creative beer, and felt that people would travel out of the way to get them.

Founders - Grand RapidsThe Founders Family, a group of passionate beer enthusiasts, has grown around this simple philosophy: “We don’t brew beer for the masses. Instead, our beers are crafted for a chosen few, a small cadre of renegades and rebels who enjoy a beer that pushes the limits of what is commonly accepted as taste. In short, we make beer for people like us.” They've won six World Beer Cup medals, four European Beer Star medals and three Great American Beer Festival medals—thirteen medals total across eight different beers.

Bell's Brewing - Kalamazoo: Larry Bell founded Bell's back in the '80s, and now his beer is sold in more than 20 states, winning global awards for some of their best known beers like Hopslam, Two Hearted and Oberon.

Kuhnhenn Brewing - WarrenThe brewery was launched in 2001. With multiple expansions to the property over the years, the company now features a full-service taproom in Warren and their home brewing supply shop Brewing World directly across the parking lot. Multiple awards and increased demand for their hand-crafted beers, meads, and wines is the primary motivation for the latest expansion: a full-scale production brewery and second taproom opened in 2014.

Detroit Beer Company - Detroit: Opened in September 2003, the Detroit Beer Co. occupies the first two floors of the historic Hartz Building on Broadway in Downtown Detroit just steps from Comerica Park, Ford Field and the Detroit Opera House making it a great spot for pre & post event dining and drinks. The historic setting, combined with state-of-the-art brewing technology and 21st century finishes provides a unique dining experience. Seating is available on both floors and can be reserved for special events. 

Redwood Brewery - Flint: Part of Flint's Redwood Steakhouse, Redwood Brewing Company, has been brewing award winning beer since 1996. Head Brewer, Konrad Connor, continues this award winning brewing tradition by using the finest all natural ingredients to create unique beer styles enjoyed by all beer fans.

Perrin Brewing- ComstockPerrin Brewing Company offers a menu of burgers, hotdogs and fried munchies to go along with 10 or so beers brewed on site.

Arbor Brewing - Ann Arbor: Ranked Brew Pub Magazine's "Best brewing in the Midwest" Michigan Microbrewing. Known for award-winning beer, great unfussy food, friendly service, casual family dining, and a great nightlife. 

Liberty Street Brewing Company - PlymouthLiberty Street Brewing Company provides an elegant atmosphere where people can enjoy a fine, hand crafted beer in Plymouth, Michigan's historic Old Village. Offers small batch ales and lagers.

Blackrocks Brewery - MarquetteBlackrocks-Marquette's Nano Brewery. At Blackrocks Brewery, their mission is to have fun and brew great beer that challenges conventional norms. Blackrocks doesn't serve food, but you will not go hungry here. Food can be ordered and delivered from several great local restaurants.

Atwater Brewery - Detroit: Located in Detroit’s historic Rivertown district, and housed in a 1919 factory warehouse, Atwater Brewery was founded in March of 1997 with the purpose of carrying on the rich history of breweries in Detroit. Their  brewing process, however, is over 200 years old. Their imported Kasper Schultz brew house allows them to brew their brands in the true heritage-style of traditional German lagers.

Griffin Claw Brewing - Birmingham: Located in Birmingham's emerging new Rail District, the brewing and distributing facility features a taproom and traditional outdoor biergarten. The new home for Big Rock Chophouse’s award-winning beer and its Brewmaster, Dan Rogers, who will oversee all the brewing, distributing, and operations of the 12,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art facility.

North Pier Brewing - Benton Harbor: Their taproom and outdoor beer garden is located less than one mile from Lake Michigan and on tap, they have a rotating list of 12 hand-crafted beers with a focus on Belgian-inspired and yeast-forward ales.

The Livery - Benton Harbor: This former horse stable and carriage shop has been brought back to life as "The Livery", one of Michigan's most exciting and unique Micro-Breweries. The Livery features a diverse selection of beer styles, ciders and wines, an outdoor beer garden, WiFi, and a Cafe serving their own custom roasted coffee and espresso. 

Witch's Hat Brewing - South Lyon: From miniscule beginnings of the 36 person bar, to a more modern setup. The Tap Room more than triple in size and gave the brewery the space to grow with our amazing community's demand. Witch's Hat moved to the new 601 S. Lafayette location and opened our new doors to the public on November 15th, 2014.

Watermark Brewing - Stevensville: Located in southwest Michigan, Watermark, a newer brewery, offers unique ales, IPAs and stouts, as well as wines and ciders. 

Arktos Meadery - Grand Rapids: Arktos Meadery is now one more step in this evolutionary process. Nature has so graciously provided us with all the ingredients necessary for the production of this Nectar of the Gods. Now it is our responsibility to take these fruits, spices, and yeasts and combine them with those two wonderfully simple ingredients of honey and water for the purpose of continuing the hallowed tradition of making mead.

Bennett's Orchard - Ottawa Lake: For over 50 years our family has grown quality fruits and vegetables at best prices around. Come visit us for fresh air and apple picking or buy them already picked. We make fresh donuts on the weekends and always are pressing fresh cider!

Check out more Michigan beer makers here, and check out more cider in Michigan here.

Michigan Distilleries: 

Two James - DetroitTwo James is located in Corktown, Detroit’s oldest neighborhood, and is the first licensed distillery in Detroit since Prohibition. Two James commemorates the exceptional lives of two great men who through hard work, perseverance and passion for life, were able to leave lasting impressions on the people they loved and the communities in which they lived. They offer bourbon, whiskey, vodka, gin and even absinthe.

Valentine Distilling - Ferndale: Recent winner of World's Best Vodka, Valentine has a 15,000 sq ft production facility, and a tasting room in downtown Ferndale. They primarily make vodka and gin.

Northern Latitudes Distillery - Leelanau: Leelanau County’s first full service distillery. Creating small batch artisan spirits from Michigan’s rich agricultural products. OPEN 7 days Offering free tastings, bottle sales & unique handcrafted cocktails. 112 E Philip St. M-204 Lk Leelanau.

Grand Traverse Distillery - Traverse CityGrand Traverse Distillery is proud to be Michigan’s oldest micro-distillery operating since 2007. Located in Traverse City, Michigan, the Grand Traverse Distillery is the vision of Kent Rabish, a Michigan native. After visiting micro-distilleries on the West Coast, Kent saw the opportunity to bring hand crafted spirits to Michigan. Across the country a renaissance is taking place in the distilling industry. Small craft distillers are bringing back hand made, high quality spirits using fresh locally grown ingredients.

Long Road Distillers - Grand Rapids: Grand Rapids' first craft distillery. Offering vodka, gin and whiskey.

Mammoth Distilling - Central LakeMammoth distills craft spirits that capture the essence of our Northern Michigan home. Overlooking the glacial waters of Torch Lake, they are inspired by the beauty that surrounds us in every season. Their 650 liter copper pot still from Goppingen, Germany produces vodka, gin, rum whiskey, bourbon and brandy. They use locally grown grains and botanicals including corn and rye from Harbor Springs, lavender from Petoskey, apples and pears from Bellaire, cherries from Traverse City and white pine from Central Lake.

Detroit City Distillery - Detroit: Detroit City Distillery creates small batch artisanal whiskey, gin and vodka using the finest local ingredients sourced directly from farms near our distillery and tasting room located in Detroit's famed Eastern Market. The result is a drink of distinction made for the revolutionaries rewriting the history of a great American city.

Ugly Dog Distillery - ChelseaUgly Dog Distillery is Michigan's premiere vodka producer. We make our hand-crafted batches from Michigan Winter Wheat to obtain the smoothest flavor profiles for our products. We also produce the famous Ugly Dog Bacon Vodka, a smashing hit for Bloody Mary enthusiasts. 

Motor City Gas - Royal Oak: As Royal Oak's first Whiskey distillery, Motor City Gas manufactures a constant evolving variety of small batch Whiskies, born from local ingredients - crafted by local hands. 

Find more Michigan distillers here. 

Find more Michigan related lists and guides below:

12 things to do in Michigan this summer
10 Michigan landmarks to visit in 2017
14 must-see Michigan landmarks
5 Northern Michigan places to visit in 2017
New Census data shows fastest, slowest growing areas in Michigan
US Census: Ann Arbor area sees state's largest population increase in 2016
This is the fastest growing county in Michigan
MAP: Michigan road construction projects in 2017
Top 50 most dangerous intersections in Michigan
Here are the Michigan stores that are closing in 2017

About the Author:

Ken Haddad is the digital content and audience manager for WDIV / He also authors the Morning Report Newsletter and various other newsletters. He's been with WDIV since 2013. He enjoys suffering through Lions games on Sundays in the fall.